Feature

A policy morass

Science  05 Sep 2014:
Vol. 345, Issue 6201, pp. 1115
DOI: 10.1126/science.345.6201.1115

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Summary

Even as scientists and government officials struggle anew with the question of how to regulate risky biological research, the United States and other nations are still working to fully implement new rules and policies that emerged from the last big debate, over the H5N1 gain-of-function studies of 2011. New U.S. rules require special reviews of certain studies, for example, including those that fall under "dual use research of concern"—work that could be used for good or bad ends. Critics argue that the new policies aren't preventing the funding of questionable studies, and some researchers would like to see new oversight of what gets published in journals.